Nothing Left to Lose (Everything to Live For)

A while back I wrote about a brand new album released by one of my favorite artists, Mat Kearney, and wouldn’t you know it, after I listened to his newest work I was disappointed.

Kearney remains a favorite of mine, but his third project, in my opinion, fell short of his previous two works.

Kearney’s newest album can be described in three words (words he used to describe it at a concert I attended right before its release.)

In Love.

No kidding.

Young Dumb and In Love, is one of his song titles. All kidding aside, I still love Kearney’s work and I’m sure I’ll buy his next album no matter what theme he decides to focus on because a few years’ back his first album, Nothing Left to Lose, met me at a particularly painful season of my life when my youngest daughter was living like, “she had nothing left to lose.”

For several years, my daughter’s life was perfectly represented by Kearney’s song, Girl America…and whenever I played it in my car, I had to hold back tears because it reminded me how little control I had in helping my daughter change the course of her life.

Over and over and over again, I’d listen and feel the desperation of a young woman who so wanted a different life but didn’t know how to get there…and there is nothing like losing a child to the culture of the day that will get a mom on her knees (and keep her there.)

Funny thing about music is that it truly is the door to people’s hearts…and when I would get frustrated with my daughter and feel like giving up on her, I’d hear this song again, and my heart would break another time…but in a good way…and I’d pick myself up and start over with her.

One day we were together in the car and Girl America came on, and she looked at me and said, “This is me!” Revelation?…turning point?…I hoped so.

I still remember that particular moment and the look on her face when she realized some artist had captured her struggle in the words of a song. Somebody “got her.”

Fast-forward several years and this song no longer even barely represents my daughter’s life. She truly is a new person living a new and better life. A living miracle!

I still listen to Kearney’s work in my car…and when I hear Girl America come on, it continues to evoke strong emotion in me…but now, that sadness is laced with hopeful expectancy.

Because now I know something.

I am more convinced than ever before that we don’t have to lose our kids to a dangerous culture…because I’ve watched my own daughter escape it and begin living…really living, one choice, one step, one day at a time.

Her mantra is no longer, “nothing left to lose” it is “everything to live for…”


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